Reliance Communications, India’s second-largest wireless network operator, has reported that its fourth-quarter profit more than doubled from INR4.03 billion (USD97.8 million) to INR10.2 billion (USD247 million). Sales in the three months ended 31 March 2007 rose 33% to INR39.4 billion, compared to the INR29.7 billion reported in the same period a year earlier.
Billionaire Chairman Anil Ambani revealed plans to spend USD2.5 billion this year extending Reliance’s GSM network, after losing out to Vodafone Group in a battle for control of India’s fourth-largest carrier Hutchison Essar. The company, which also operates an extensive CDMA-based network, is expected to spend about a USD1 billion to expand its GSM network to the 15 states in which it does not currently have coverage. Reliance Communications’ mobile subscriber base rose to about 28 million at the end of March; the company added 1.2 million new users in March alone, and its overall customer base, including fixed-line and broadband users, exceeded 30 million.